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Estimation of a Trophic State Index for selected inland lakes in Michigan, 1999–2013

March 11, 2016

A 15-year estimated Trophic State Index (eTSI) for Michigan inland lakes is available, and it spans seven datasets, each representing 1 to 3 years of data from 1999 to 2013. On average, 3,000 inland lake eTSI values are represented in each of the datasets by a process that relates field-measured Secchi-disk transparency (SDT) to Landsat satellite imagery to provide eTSI values for unsampled inland lakes. The correlation between eTSI values and field-measured Trophic State Index (TSI) values from SDT was strong as shown by R2 values from 0.71 to 0.83. Mean eTSI values ranged from 42.7 to 46.8 units, which when converted to estimated SDT (eSDT) ranged from 8.9 to 12.5 feet for the datasets. Most eTSI values for Michigan inland lakes are in the mesotrophic TSI class. The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Level III Ecoregions were used to illustrate and compare the spatial distribution of eTSI classes for Michigan inland lakes. Lakes in the Northern Lakes and Forests, North Central Hardwood Forests, and Southern Michigan/Northern Indiana Drift Plains ecoregions are predominantly in the mesotrophic TSI class. The Huron/Erie Lake Plains and Eastern Corn Belt Plains ecoregions, had predominantly eutrophic class lakes and also the highest percent of hypereutrophic lakes than other ecoregions in the State. Data from multiple sampling programs—including data collected by volunteers with the Cooperative Lakes Monitoring Program (CLMP) through the Michigan Department of Environmental Quality (MDEQ), and the 2007 National Lakes Assessment (NLA)—were compiled to compare the distribution of lake TSI classes between each program. The seven eTSI datasets are available for viewing and download with eSDT from the Michigan Lake Water Clarity Interactive Map Viewer at

Publication Year 2016
Title Estimation of a Trophic State Index for selected inland lakes in Michigan, 1999–2013
DOI 10.3133/sir20165023
Authors Lori M. Fuller, Richard S. Jodoin
Publication Type Report
Publication Subtype USGS Numbered Series
Series Title Scientific Investigations Report
Series Number 2016-5023
Index ID sir20165023
Record Source USGS Publications Warehouse
USGS Organization Michigan Water Science Center